KUCHING, Jan 25 —The Sarawak government will announce the Bantuan Khas Sarawakku Sayang (BKSS) 8.0 package in the near future to help reduce the burden of the people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, said Chief Minister Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg.

He said the BKSS 8.0 assistance for the first six months, totalling RM285.47 million, in non-cash form was also described as the largest assistance ever channelled by the state government.

“This is one of the largest assistance provided by a state government in the country and this does not include a special allocation of more than RM91 million to the State Disaster Management Committee to cover expenses to address the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.

Speaking at the Sarawak Civil Service Day 2022 here today, he said with the implementation of the Post Covid-19 Development Strategy (PCDS) 2030, the civil service in the state needed to move fast, in line with efforts to accelerate the state development further.

He added that this strategy has already started through an allocation of RM4.803 billion in the Sarawak Budget 2022, to implement rural infrastructure and utility projects to raise the economic status of the people in the area.

Abang Johari said another RM1.18 billion has been allocated to intensify the development of road infrastructure, bridges, ports and river infrastructure to open more economic opportunities to the rural community.

To enable the civil servants to further increase the speed of the delivery of their services, he urged for procedures that could delay the process to be streamlined, so that development projects can be expedited further.

“I must tell you what is happening now is that a lot of the rakyat projects are quite slow in implementation. It could be caused by bureaucracy or red tape, may be due to procedures, which is slowing down the process of implementation of these projects,” he said.

Abang Johari said the new governance procedures and the use of digital technology were also adopted in the development implementation process so that public finances could be coordinated well.

“I am not suggesting that we want to do away with procedures as the element of integrity or good governance must always be the basis of public spending. However, there are procedures that I believe can be adjusted so that our development can be expedited,” he said. — Bernama